Monday, August 27, 2018

About that phone...

So, I did end up getting the iPhone X. The screen size and quality, as well as the camera advances meant that it was time to retire the iPhone 6. I'm loving the option of a lens that's not so wide, as well as the sensor quality (great range of tones in the shot below), plus the extra video capabilities.

Mike Clare

029 971 9718 

Monday, November 6, 2017

The Future is Here

I couldn't resist checking out the iPhone X in store on launch day. Compared to my iPhone 6 and the 8 plus also on display the screen is incredibly good - punchy colours that aren't overly saturated, crisp detail, deep blacks.... throw in the bigger screen area, great camera specs and video performance and I'm getting a little giddy.... yeah, this could be in my future!
Maybe it'll even get me back to shooting content for this blog as well as Instagram?

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Maritime edit

Very poor start to the New Year as far as my blogging is concerned 😕

This shot, taken at Evans Bay Mariner in Wellington, was never going to be a great image, but I decided to try it with a different crop and a boost in saturation and contrast.
Luckily the editing done within Apple's Photos app is non-destructive (until shared from the app), as I was able to revisit the image and alter the crop without losing further quality.
If you decide that you'd rather go back to the original it's as simple as tapping the edit button again and tapping 'revert', or you can select an image, tap the share button and choose to duplicate an image before doing any editing.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Botanical Mechanical

A couple of photos from a recent trip to Wellington's Botanical Gardens - the bottom image is a sculpture fabricated from No. 8 wire.
The app used was Frametastic.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Dusk Seascape

The 'magic hour' is always a photographers favourite time. Everything looks better. This image was just cropped and had the saturation raised a touch.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Hasty Opening

I received a new equipment carry bag in the mail and in my keenness to open it I managed to slice through the packaging and the bag. Oops - a bit of a Casey Neistat moment!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Tech in the field

Another assignment where wifi enabled devices made life easier.
To get the finished shot without cars obscuring the building and without the foyer signage disappearing into darkness I raised the camera up on a tall pole and controlled it with my iPhone using a Canon app linked to the on-board wifi of the camera. I could see what the camera was seeing via the iPhone in my hand (while it was about 3.5 mtrs up the pole) as well as change exposure settings, focus and fire the shutter.
The camera was also firing a flash I'd placed on the steps of the building entrance via a wifi command unit on it's hotshoe, which was illuminating the extra signage.
Not an amazing photo... but one that wouldn't have been obtainable otherwise.

Monday, May 30, 2016

When the sun ain't shining

A recent shoot where I decided that the shot could do with a bit more zing. The background was a little drab so I tucked a speedlight (with a warm gel) behind a tree in the background and tried a few power settings until it gave a kiss of sunshine and some rim light to the subject.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Mucho Macro

This wee tomato is about the size of a grape - shot with a clip-on macro lens that is part of a set that comprises of a fisheye lens and a wide angle adapter that unscrews to become a macro lens on the iPhone.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

iOS Edit

The 'After' and 'Before' of a quick edit of a shot taken at a local beach.
I shot the initial image on the iPhone 6, it was then transferred automatically to my Photo Stream when I next got within a wifi network. I could then check out the image more clearly on the Photo Stream album of the iPad Air 2 and make some adjustments to highlight/shadow tones, contrast and colour saturation using the on-board editing options in the Photos app. A crop to 16:9 format helped to give it a bit more balance.

Friday, February 12, 2016


I recently heard about Apple's recall/exchange program for the plug adapters that have been supplied with iPhones, iPads and laptops for the last several years.
After checking around the house I took in 5 of the older round style adapters and swapped them for units with a more compact, flatter style
(that are supposedly safer).
The iOS app 'Curved Type' was used for overlaying words on the photo, and then I used 'Rhonna' to drop in the arrows on the iPhone photo.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

From the darkroom to Lightroom

I finally got around to trying out Adobe's Lightroom app on the iPhone (which I generally use on my computer when dealing with DSLR images).
Seems quite useful, particularly if you wanted to edit DSLR shots on an iPad. There are a lot of the same controls and adjustments that you find in the full-blown app... but kinda tricky to use on a phone screen.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Techno lust

I had some hands-on time with the new iPad Pro today and suddenly my iPad Air 2 seems rather pathetic.
Apart from the issue of carrying it along with my camera gear, this thing would be so very cool to check images on.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015


Early morning Wellington to Auckland flight.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Quick shoot

Here's a time-compressed photo session I recently undertook for Parkinson's NZ (with a quick round of Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes to warm up). I set up my iPhone running the OSnap! time lapse app shooting one frame every 2 seconds before then setting up to photograph the group. From OSnap! I exported a video file playing at 30 fps to the camera roll. This was transferred to my iPad for easier editing - adding soundtrack and colour change - and emailed to the blog.
For the photo shoot I used a Canon 6D with a 600EX-RT mounted on it, plus a second 600EX-RT on a stand, being fired as a slave to the flash on camera.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Evening Walk

The evenings are getting a little longer, so I should take my DSLR with me when walking... but I often don't. I do always have the iPhone with me though.
A few shots from last night that I put together in an app called Frametastic - a free app that has some annoying ads, but works well enough.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Too late

I tried to get to a decent vantage point before the sun dipped below the horizon... but missed it by a few minutes.
By using an app called Lensflare on the iPhone I was able to 'fix' that by adding a sun and a warm glow.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


I've been capturing video with my DSLR more frequently and really enjoying the convenience of an external monitor. The camera I'm using doesn't have a fold out screen so there are times when I've been jammed up against a wall or needing to shoot from a low angle, so using a monitor allows the action details and focus to be viewed comfortably. In this case I'm using an Android phone with the DSLR Controller app to view & control camera operations.

Friday, August 7, 2015

...and 2nd prize goes to...

Yep, Wgtn City Gallery were recently running a competition on Instagram in conjunction with NZ Photo Forum and I managed to take out the second spot with this image of two boys on Courtenay Place (a re-edit of an older iPhone photo).
That's the stylish tote bag that I won - I would have rather liked to win the Photo Forum book that went to the winner.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Urban Poppy Fields

A belated ANZAC blog post - the aftermath of Wellington celebrations.
The photo was edited within the native Photos app - auto-enhanced and then the Transfer filter was applied.

Friday, April 10, 2015

From little acorns

This shot was made in the ProShot app as the native camera was giving the scene a blueish cast. I set a manual white balance and later imported the image into Snapseed to crop and slightly edit the overall look of the shot. (iPhone 6)

Sunday, March 22, 2015


We seem to have a garden that is very popular for Monarch butterflies in late summer so I often chase them with a camera.
I've discovered that they seem less likely to take flight if I'm not directly behind the camera - so I've been putting the iPhone into a bracket on the end of an aluminium painters pole (a giant selfie stick) and using a Bluetooth shutter release.
This has been allowing me to get up close to the creature for stills or video (check out a slo-mo clip on my Instagram feed).
This shot was edited slightly in Camera+ (clarity and vignette) - crop shown to check detail.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Keyboard Extras

Chatting to a friend today about some recent changes to keyboard behaviour on a Mac led me to discover an iOS-like feature that operates under Yosemite - hold down on various keys to give access to accents, etc.(maybe it's been there for a while?).
This led me to check whether my iPhone carrying friend (owner since 3GS) was aware of the press & hold iOS keyboard options... he wasn't - how about you?
To access various URL suffixes in Mail or Safari: hold on the full stop key and slide your finger to the one you want, then release.
To use letter/character accents and special characters: hold on the desired base character (vowels, etc), slide and release.
A different currency symbol: hold on that $ key.

Friday, January 16, 2015

New Year, new phone

I've been happily using an iPhone 5 for over 2 years and have nothing but praise for the functionality of the overall device and quality of the camera.
For various, unrelated, reasons I bought an iPhone 6 and am so far very impressed with the handset and the improvements worked into the camera. Yes, still 8 Mpx, but along with sensor tweaks, new software and a faster processor - the camera is excellent.
I'm surprised at the level of detail and nice bokeh in this fairly ordinary snap.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Cutting the cord

This iPhone behind-the-scenes snap is all about wireless. Where I once would have had a USB cable going from the camera to a laptop computer and a sync cord going to my flash unit, I now use the camera's built-in wi-fi to send images to an iPad for the client to check (on the small table) and a radio transmitter on the camera to fire and control power settings on the flash units. So much more convenient and safer than having trip hazards on set.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Italian Edit

Just for a change I've decided to post this short video clip which is a combination of 2 short scenes shot on the iPhone 5 and a Dean Martin classic.
These were imported into the iMovie app on the iPhone, edited together and exported via email straight from the app.
The iMovie app (plus some other Apple productivity apps) are available for free for iDevices purchased after Sept 2013.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Harbour View

A cloudy seaside scene that was enhanced a little with a '70's filter plus a gritty frame courtesy of the Camera+ app.
The makers of this app do not seem to rest - they are often updating the look and functionality of the app.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Morning Drama

I decided to see what this sky image could become with a bit of work in the iPhone app Snapseed.
There are a host of adjustments that can be made within the app, and it's very easy to take it too far, so I worked mainly on the saturation and contrast.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Afternoon light

Low and warm - the late afternoon sun casts a light that photographers love.
Always keep your iPhone at the ready.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Apple Process

This shot from beside a prison wall was sent from my iPhone to my iPad via Airdrop and then edited in the native Photos app - cropped and given a filter called Noir, before uploading to the blog.

Into the sun

I remember reading the guidelines that used to come with Kodak film and being told to keep the sun behind you for the best light on your subject. Well I tend to break that guideline rather often - shooting into the sun can give a beautiful and interesting light to photographs.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Taste of Italy

On a recent brief visit to the Amalfi Coast I found plenty of photographic opportunities. I mainly used either my Canon DSLR (as I was there on an assignment), but I also used a compact Canon S120 quite a bit as it is able to shoot a RAW file. Of course I did shoot with the iPhone 5 too, and this typical lunch image was filtered in the new version of my old favourite CameraBag app.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014


Surprisingly this is an Auckland rather than a Wellington scene (it can get windy and wet in most places).
I used Snapseed to edit this shot - it takes some getting used to, but it's a great retouching app.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Urban Transport

Yes, I've been neglecting this blog somewhat... Instagram has been hogging my iPhone snapping love.
I must try and spread the pixels more evenly.
This Auckland over-bridge image was put through HDR FX Pro to bring a little more tone and colour to the sky.

Thursday, June 12, 2014


An early morning view across Wellington Harbour. Here's the original image, plus the same shot after it was imported into the Instagram app, cropped and a filter applied.



Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Local playground - late evening.

Once again this was given the Instagram treatment.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Travel Bites

On a recent family holiday I used both my Canon DSLR & the iPhone for various image capturing duties.
Of course the iPhone was wonderfully simple to use for sharing moments with others - mostly via Instagram, although I also used iMessage and email.
These shots were all treated with a filter or two in Instagram.